The Outbreak Zone is about to get even bigger.#Zombies pic.twitter.com/wGh6JJpcH6March 19, 2021
Accompanying the tweet is a gif of the swirling Dark Aether portal that players use in Outbreak to travel to different areas. At the end of the gif, the portal opens up into what looks like an existing Black Ops Cold War multiplayer map: Sanatorium. Sanatorium dropped during Black Ops Cold War Season 1 and is located in the Ural Mountains, which is the current home to several game modes. It's also the rumored location of the next Call of Duty: Warzone map after the Warzone nuke blows Verdansk sky-high.
And now that zombies have recently joined Warzone and continue to move locations on the map, it's even more clear that the battle royale is shifting closer to Black Ops Cold War and away from Modern Warfare. A recent Warzone leak points to a Zombie event that will destroy Verdansk, with audio files that include dialogue like "Verdansk is gone" and "avoid the infected at all costs."
CharlieIntel suggests (opens in new tab) is making the argument that it's "all-but-confirmed" that the Ural Mountains will be the next Warzone map. There are currently three maps for the 40-player Fireteam modes: Alpine, Sanatorium, and Ruka, which are all set in the Ural Mountains of Russia. Black Ops Cold War Season 2 added another Ural Mountains map (Gololva), and Call of Duty hackers have pointed out that all of the maps' names start with 'wz' in the game's source code.
Considering the maps are already large enough to host 40-person matches and the immense Outbreak mode, it would be easy to format these existing maps into a battle royale-sized location. And just like when players realized that the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare maps were becoming part of the larger Verdansk map, it's not that far of a stretch to imagine Treyarch and Activision doing the same thing with Black Ops Cold War.
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